Two Houston-area students headed to national spelling bee

Shobha Dasari, a 6th grader at Leon Sablatura Middle School in Pearland ISD, and Syamantak Payra, a 7th grader at Westbrook Intermediate School in Clear Creek ISD, are co-champions of the 2013 HoustonPBS Spelling Bee by spelling the winning words ? "oolemma" and "ogival."

March 23, 2013 6:10:52 PM PDT
Two Houston-area students are headed to the national spelling bee.

Pearland ISD sixth-grader Shobha Dasari and seventh-grade Clear Creek ISD student Syamantak Payra were named the co-champions of the 2013 HoustonPBS Spelling Bee on Saturday. Both students beat out 53 other competitors from 42 Southeast Texas counties by correctly spelling "oolemma" and "ogival."

The two will now receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to represent the region at the Scripps National Spelling Bee from May 28?May 30.They will face 277 contestant spellers from across the country, aiming for victory and prizes worth more than $40,000.

The HoustonPBS Spelling Bee, now in its fifth year, is the third largest local Bee in the country with 1,040 participating schools.

"Hosting and televising the Houston region's Spelling Bee is a natural fit," Houston Public Media Executive Director & General Manager, Lisa Trapani Shumate explains. "Houston Public Media is committed to education and to giving all children the tools they need to learn as well as showcasing their successes. We appreciate the students, parents, teachers and volunteers who help make this possible."

Dasari attends Leon Sablatura Middle School in Pearland ISD. Payra goes to Westbrook Intermediate School.

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